Hi Jakob, nice to meet you. The tour started yesterday in Berlin. What are your impressions from the first gig?
Jakob: Oh, actually it was very good. There were 150 people, that’s not so much, but everybody seemed to be really loving it. Everybody was getting into it, you know, dancing around. And yes, we got really great feedback from the people. It was a nice kick-off for the whole tour.
You are acting with local support bands on this tour. How did you get along with the supports yesterday and with Mercury Falling today?
Jakob: Yesterday we had three support bands, actually I don’t remember all of their names, but they were pretty good. All of them seem to be nice guys. Concerning Mercury Falling, I haven’t heard about them before, I’m not familiar with them, but they seem to be nice guys, too. You know, how it’s like to be a support band. They can’t use the whole stage, but they are cool guys.
What do you like more: playing on big festivals or small club gigs like this evening?
Jakob: I prefer club gigs, because you are so close to the fans. Sometimes, when you play festivals, you play in the afternoon. There is daylight and that puts a distance between the band and the audience. But of course sometimes, when festivals are really amazing you catch the attention of so many people and that’s great. Both have their good and their bad sides.
What festivals are you supposed to play this summer in Germany?
Jakob: We play at “Bang your head” and “Baden in Blut”. Do you want to join?
At this moment, bass player Rene Pedersen came upstairs from the backstage room to the open air restaurant and took place at our table.
What is your favourite song on the actual album and just why?
Jakob: I think, it’s “Simplicity Demand”, because it’s very forceful, very direct and it’s a great song to play live. It has lots of energy, lots of atmosphere and, yeah, lots of everything. But I don’t think we will play it tonight, because we change the setlist every day a little bit.
And what about “Redefine Me”? That’s one of my favourite tracks…
Jakob: Haha, you can probably expect this song tonight.
What can you tell us about the metal scene in Denmark?
Jakob: It’s very good, it’s exploding. You see a lot of danish bands getting a record deal. A lot of bands are touring and supporting bigger bands around in Europe and the USA. That’s something you didn’t see ten years ago. I think there is a lot of potential in the danish scene. The danish scene has become a positive brand outside of Denmark, because a lot of Danish bands are quite originally, they have their own sound and mix different elements in their own way. MERCENARY are a kind of hybrid, we have elements of different styles in our sound. I think our scene is getting stronger and we will see some good releases this year.
Do you have enough time to visit concerts from other bands, when you are at home?
Jakob: Yeah, for sure. We try to catch the local concerts whenever we are at home and we have the energy for it, haha. Because sometimes you are burned out, when you get home from a tour. But we always try to meet the guys from other bands we know, when they are on tour in Denmark. SUFFOCATION will play in our town with a Danish support band.
Is there any other band you would like to go on tour with?
Jakob: Yeah, lots, haha. I think we will fit in a tour with lots of different bands, because we have a wide range of influences in our sound. Bands like SOILWORK, ARCH ENEMY or CHILDREN OF BODOM who are all combining hard stuff and melodic choruses might be possible tour partners. My number one is SOILWORK. We have toured with NEVERMORE , and it was amazing.
Rene: We actually missed the opportunity for a 14 days tour with SOILWORK in England, because our lead singer has got a child, so we had to say “No” to a tour with SOILWORK.
Jakob: There are lots of other bands, we can go on tour with. Power metal bands, thrash metal bands. We toured with THE HAUNTED, for example.
Rene: One of my big dreams would be to go on tour with MACHINE HEAD, but maybe it’s too hard, haha.
And what about a band like SLAYER?
Rene: I am personally a big fan of SLAYER, but I am not sure that they would like to see us going on tour with them. Maybe the SLAYER fans could think that we are too soft. I think it’s a tough job to be the warm-up for SLAYER, because their fans are very dedicated. They only come to see SLAYER and don’t care about the warm-ups. Personally and as musicians it would be an honour for us to do the warm-up for SLAYER, because they are a great influence in my personal career as a musician.
Jakob: Our name MERCENARY is based on the lyrics from the “South of heaven” album.
What actual albums are you listening to at the moment?
Jakob: I am listening to different stuff on my iPod, but I haven’t bought any recent cd’s yet. In the last weeks I didn’t have time to listen to any album, because everything has been so hectic, the tour preparation and so on.
What are your future plans?
Jakob: Obviously for the next months we will be touring mostly in Germany, but we have also shows in Holland, Belgium, France and Switzerland. We will get back home to play some shows in Denmark. During this period and the festival season we will try to write some new material and perhaps go in the studio later this year. We will see what happens.
Marc Fischer and Philipp Bischoff (Century Media Records)
Markus Meissner (Domcore Konzerte)